Hot water is a must these days. They do not only provide more relaxing baths, but they also clean better.
If you want to have continuous hot water in your home, you should invest in an outdoor tankless water heater. They are more efficient for that purpose compared to standard hot water tanks.
Outdoor tankless waters use special heat exchangers to heat the water instantly as it goes through the device. The best thing about them is that they are installed outdoors, so you do not have to worry about adding flues or vent pipes or maintaining a tank.
Most of these tankless water heaters are portable too! This means you can take them with you on outdoor trips such as camping, going to the beach, taking a vacation in a cabin, or going sailing for a couple days. You can bring the unit with you and have hot water right away!
The choices in the market can be overwhelming if you have no idea how to choose the best outdoor tankless water heater. But we got your back!
This article gives you a product review of the top 10 outdoor tankless water heaters that we can find in the market today. After that, you get a buying guide to help you decide which product is best for your needs and an FAQ portion to help you know more about the unit and how to use it.
Here, we give you a review of the best outdoor tankless water heaters that we can find. We present to you their best features and the pros and cons of using the unit.
If you want an outdoor tankless water heater from a reputable brand, the Noritz NR50ODNG is worth looking into. Noritz introduced the first modern electronic tankless water heater in 1981 and has remained one of the leading innovators in the water heating industry. Their products are known to be trusted and recommended by professionals.
This unit is lightweight and effortless to install. You can do the job yourself if you know what to do. If not, you can always call a professional to do the work for you.
The unit gives a 12-year warranty for the heat exchanger, a 5-year warranty for parts, and a 1-year warranty for labor.
The valve kit needed for installation is sold separately. Noritz justifies this move as a way to let you choose between threaded or copper sweat connections.
- Uses low NOx technology – you do not have to worry about your carbon footprint with this unit.
- Lightweight at 33 pounds. It is easy to carry around and can perform well for outdoor trips or activities.
- The valve kit, which is required for installation, is sold separately.
If you are a camper or love to rent a cabin in the woods, you will love this product from Camplux.
This outdoor tankless water heater from Camplux stands out because it is very portable. You can easily carry it along with you wherever you go, which is great for campers, RV owners, those going on a holiday on a mountain cabin, or for those who love long sailing trips on their boats.
What makes it great for outdoor use is that it can be battery-operated. You can take it off-grid where electricity is not available! You can have hot water in the middle of the woods or out in the beach!
The Camplux outdoor tankless water heater is also a very efficient unit. It is one of the units with the lowest water pressure on the market. It just needs 3.0 PSI!
The unit is built for outdoor installation since it comes with a flame failure device, anti-freezing protection, overheat protection, and oxygen depletion safety protection.
- Has an anti-freezing protection feature, so it is perfect for outdoor installation in very cold areas.
- For a compact-sized unit, it can handle an output of 1.32 gallons per minute, which is more than enough for two people on an outdoor trip.
- This unit uses propane, so you should be extra careful. Make sure that there are no leaks.
If you are looking for a tankless heater that can provide an endless supply of hot water for your entire house without taking up a lot of space, the Rinnai V65EN unit will work best for you.
This outdoor tankless hot water heater comes in a very compact design. You will have no trouble looking for the right place to install it.
The Rinnai V65EN is also built to consume less electricity. It only heats the water when you need it. Because of this, the unit consumes 40% less energy compared to other products.
It also comes with residential factory warranty coverage. You get 120 months coverage on the heat exchanger, 12 months coverage for labor, and 60 months coverage for parts.
- Energy-efficient – consumes 40% less energy.
- Great warranty coverage.
- Low water pressure in some settings.
The Eccotemp L10 portable tankless water heater is best for those who want to take the unit with them while they go on trips. Its small and compact size gives you a hassle-free packing experience.
This portable outdoor tankless water runs on propane and performs well for outdoor use such as camping. It is also effortless to set up and use.
The unit comes with an automatic safety shutoff that activates after 20 minutes to ensure that no overheating occurs.
It comes with a water heater kit that includes a rain cap, regulator, shower head, and other installation accessories.
- Very portable thanks to its compact size – great for outdoor lovers.
- Easy installation. You can do it yourself.
- The heater works well, but the accessories that come with the package are not of high quality. It is best to replace them with better models.
If safety is a priority when it comes to water heaters because you have kids in your home, then you should prioritize this outdoor tankless water heater from Gasland.
It offers multiple protection and safety features, ensuring the safety of your family when in use. It comes with overheating protection, flame failure device, and anti-freezing protection. The unit has CSA approved safety certification as per US and Canadian standards.
Gasland’s outdoor tankless water heater is an energy-saving unit. The propane water heater and main burner use advanced combustion technology to decrease your propane gas use. The advanced technology also makes it possible for the unit to make less noise.
- Multiple safety protection features to keep you and your family safe.
- Very easy to install.
- The unit must be brought indoors in below-freezing temperatures since it could not withstand it. Best used in areas with warmer climates.
If you want an outdoor tankless water heater that will surely work even during freezing temperatures, the Takagi T-KJr2-OS-NG should be on the top of your list. This unit is made to be installed outdoors, and it comes with an internal freeze protection feature.
This outdoor tankless water heater also comes with great temperature controls. It has a default temperature of 122 °F and can work at 113 °F to 140 °F.
The Takagi T-KJr2-OS-NG also comes with generous warranty coverage. You have 12 years coverage on the heat exchanger, 5 years coverage on parts, and 1 year coverage for labor. But you have to install it with a licensed professional’s help, or else your warranty will be void.
- Quiet operation. You can run it even late at night and not worry about waking people up with the noise.
- Good warranty coverage.
- The heater has to restrict the water flow internally to increase its temperature.
If you want something affordable and energy-efficient, the EcoSmart ECO 11 is the best choice for you. This electric outdoor tankless water heater is not only budget-friendly but also is energy-efficient.
This tankless water heater is designed to only consume energy when it is in use. Therefore, you do not have to worry about increased energy bills. You can save up to 50% of the water heating costs with this unit.
The unit comes with a thermostat that allows you to adjust the temperature. It also comes with a digital temperature control that displays the tankless water heater’s current settings.
All the spare parts can be replaced easily. You get a lifetime warranty with this unit on electronics, elements, and exchangers. However, the warranty does not cover any incidental damages or labor.
- Comes with a lifetime warranty
- Energy and cost-efficient
- Needs frequent maintenance and cleaning if you are using hard water
If you want a tankless water heater that you can carry around with you outdoors and a unit that is easy to set up, you should consider getting the EZ 202.
This is a high-class and durable looking unit that has been firmly put together. You can easily tell that it is a product that would last a long time.
The connection slots and holes of the unit also have labels to quickly tell which goes where. This makes it very easy for anyone to set it up.
The EZ 202 uses 2D batteries, which are not included in the package. But it does come with a showerhead and hose that you can easily bring along with you, along with the tankless water heater unit.
It comes with a digital display that will show you the temperature of the water.
- Can provide up to 3.2 gallons of hot water at one time with a consistent temperature.
- Does not require high pressure to work.
- Does not come with a propane gas regulator, connector hose, and batteries.
If durability and quality are what you are looking for, the VEVOR 18L could deliver what you need. The unit has an anti-rust stainless steel case and uses high-temperature-resistant copper. This tankless water heater can definitely serve you for a long time.
Despite being made out of stainless steel, the unit is lightweight and portable. You can mount it on the wall easily.
The unit has a clear LCD display that allows you to see what the current temperature is. Then, it also has three control knobs. The knobs allow you to adjust between summer and winter mode to save energy, control the gas supply, and control how much hot water you get.
The package includes the water heater, one shower head kit, one propane gas regulator and hose, one water filter, and one English user manual.
- Made out of high-quality and durable materials.
- You can save up to 40% of energy with the summer and winter modes.
- The company should have better customer service.
If you want a tankless water heater that can function outdoors and indoors, the Rheem RTG-84XLN-1 is a good choice. You can use it for your city apartment and then bring it with you when you go to a cabin or the beach.
The unit has a freeze protection feature for when you want to install them outdoors. It can stand being exposed up to -30 degrees Celsius.
Since this tankless water heater operates with natural gas, it is also one of the most eco-friendly models in the market. And because gas costs are affordable, you also get to save money on this unit.
The only downside is that the Rheem RTG-84XLN-1 does not come with a warranty. However, it is made out of stainless steel, so you can expect it to be durable.
- The unit can work both outdoors and indoors.
- Made out of high-quality stainless steel.
- No warranty
If you want to end up with the best outdoor tankless water heater, keep the following points in mind when reviewing your options:
The first factor that you should pay attention to is the capacity of the outdoor tankless water heater. How many faucets or showers can it cover? If you have a lot of rooms that need hot water, then you should get a unit that is large enough to cover everything. Otherwise, you will compromise the water temperature and not be getting the heat you need.
You have to make sure that your outdoor tankless water heater is compatible with the pipes that are already installed in your home. This will minimize the expenses that you need to install the outdoor tankless water heater.
Of course, you have to make sure that your outdoor tankless water heater is made out of quality materials since they are made to be installed outdoors. It should be able to stand exposure to the elements. Otherwise, you will be just wasting your money.
An outdoor tankless water heater should be able to perform well no matter what kind of weather conditions it is exposed to. For instance, when you need it in cold climates, it should have some freeze protection feature to still function smoothly.
It also helps to have a unit that will not rust when exposed to rainwater. Waterproofing is also a useful feature for an outdoor water heater. This will prevent water and sediments from seeping into the unit.
The second thing you should consider is the source of power for your outdoor tankless water heater. There are two major sources: electricity and gas. If portability is a big deal, you should choose gas-powered units since you can take them with you in off-grid areas where electricity is not available.
An energy-efficient unit is essential since water heating consumes a lot of gas and electricity. Aside from that, it is also one of the most frequently used appliances at home.
To make sure that you do not experience an undesirable spike in your energy bills, you should get a tankless water heater with a good energy rating. This means that the unit has been tested and that the gas consumption and electricity bills stay in check even with frequent use.
Incoming water temperature
Before getting an outdoor tankless water heater, you should know what the incoming water temperature is. This will determine how much power your water heater will be needed to heat the water.
For instance, if the incoming water temperature is below 50 °F, you should get gas-powered tankless water heaters since they are more efficient and powerful in heating compared to electric-powered tankless water heaters. This is the case when you live in areas with colder climates.
Do you have hard water or soft water? This matters because if you have hard water, your outdoor tankless water heater will need more maintenance to last longer.
Hard water has a lot of minerals in it, and these minerals can buildup in the unit. It is best if you get a water softener system so that you do not have to put so much maintenance effort into your tankless water heater.
The next factor is your budget. This one can quickly narrow down your options. However, you should not skimp on this – since it provides a necessity that you would continuously need, especially if you live in colder areas. Ensure you are working with a reasonable budget to not end up with a cheap product that can easily break down in just a few weeks.
When it comes to technical devices, it is always better to get a warranty. You never know when things can go wrong, and a warranty gives you free repair service for a certain period.
A manufacturer that provides a warranty is a manufacturer that is confident in its products. The longer the warranty, the better.
Here is a list of common questions outdoor tankless water heater buyers have in mind before making a final purchase.
What is the best outdoor tankless water heater?
According to our review above, we find that the Noritz NR50ODNG is the best in the market today. For one, it is a unit made by a reputable brand. Noritz has been around for over 60 years and is considered one of the leaders in the industry.
The unit itself is very lightweight, so you can carry it with you on your travels or do outdoor activities – you can have the luxury of having hot water no matter where you go.
It also comes with generous warranty coverage. In case something goes wrong with your unit, you can rely on your warranty coverage to lessen your repair costs.
Aside from that, this gas-powered outdoor tankless water heater uses low NOx technology, making it an environment-friendly purchase. You do not have to worry about your carbon footprint every time you use it!
Why use an outdoor tankless water heater?
Since hot water will only be delivered when needed, it does not operate all the time. Compare this with a water heater tank where the water has to be heated and re-heated all the time to maintain the raised temperature.
Tankless water heaters last longer than tank heaters. On average, a tankless water heater that was maintained correctly can last for at least 20 years.
The primary advantage of using a tankless water heater is the lack of a tank. A lot of problems can be associated with a tank full of water exposed to elements such as malfunctions and the risk of the water in the tank getting cold.
When you get an outdoor tankless water heater, you do not have to worry about space when conducting outdoor installation. Without a tank, there are no size constraints. Because it has no tank, you can easily mount it in the wall, and they look better too.
Most tankless heaters come in a compact size that allows you to bring them along with you in your outdoor adventures and trips.
Tankless water heaters are designed to have replaceable parts. When something goes wrong, all you have to do is replace the part, and the unit is still good to go. If a tank water heater starts to leak, you will probably have to replace the entire unit.
Unlimited water supply
When you use a tank water heater, the length of your shower will be limited by the size of the tank. But since a tankless water heater can heat up any water that goes through the unit, you can take all the long showers you want.
You are not using water sitting in a tank, and that water could contain rust and other minerals. You get to use fresher water that is heated on the spot.
Installing a tankless water heater outdoors is a safer move for homeowners. In case a malfunction or a leak happens, the damage that can occur will be reduced and will take place outside the house.
Most units also come with multiple safety features such as freeze protection and timers to ensure that the unit will be running smoothly all the time.
Which is better – gas or electric outdoor tankless water heater?
This will depend on your personal needs. A gas tankless water heater has its advantages, and an electric tankless water heater also has its own strong points. Let us compare the difference between the two.
Power and efficiency
When it comes to power and efficiency, a gas tankless water heater has the upper hand. It can immediately raise the temperature of cold water -even at temperatures below 50 °F.
If the incoming water is cold, and you use an electric tankless water heater, the unit will have to strain to work more, and this causes it to consume more power. This is why an electric tankless water heater is recommended for those who live in warmer climates.
A gas tankless water heater can maintain the heated water temperature even when multiple faucets are being used simultaneously. The temperature will be consistent and steady all throughout.
For electric-powered outdoor tankless water heaters, usage might just be limited to two faucets working at the same time. Try using more than that, and the heat will be compromised.
A gas tankless water heater is more expensive since it can do more. The prices will vary depending on the capacity, output flow rate, features, etc.
An electric tankless water heater is cheaper. Some high-end models are at the same price range as gas-powered water heaters.
Although electric-powered water heaters are more affordable upfront, they will cost more in the long run, and this will reflect on your energy bill.
Maintenance and Upkeep
When it comes to a gas tankless water heater, maintenance will involve checking for gas leaks and ensuring that there are no mineral buildups in the unit.
For electric-powered outdoor tankless water heaters, maintenance will involve checking on the electrical wirings and connections regularly to ensure that there will be no malfunctions or short circuits.
It is always best to choose a unit that comes with multiple safety features. These features ensure that the unit is not only safe for your family but also protects itself from possible malfunctions.
Can a tankless water heater be installed outside?
Yes, a tankless heater can be installed outside. All products mentioned in this article are outdoor tankless water heaters.
An outdoor tankless heater is designed to be installed outdoors. Therefore, you can expect these units to be made out of materials that can withstand the elements.
But you also have to know that these units still have their limitations. Some units cannot function in below-freezing temperatures – you would need to invest in high-end units for that.
One great benefit of outdoor tankless water heaters is that they do not take up much space and are easier to install.
What is the downside of a tankless water heater?
If you compare the price of an outdoor tankless water heater with a tank water heater, you can see that the tank water heater is cheaper. However, do not let the high initial cost fool you. You get to save more money and get more benefits with a tankless water heater in the long run.
Another downside is there will be output limitations if your water demands are higher than what the outdoor tankless water heater is capable of. Without a storage tank, the unit will only be able to deliver as much water as it can heat in one time.
How do I protect my outside tankless water heater?
Here is some advice on how to keep your tankless water heater from freezing outside. The first thing you should do is install it in a warmer spot but in a place where the connection source will be stable. Make sure that you always check the recirculation system and that the fittings are always insulated.
How long do outdoor tankless water heaters last?
If you use it correctly and give it the proper care and maintenance, an outdoor tankless water heater can have a life expectancy of 20 years. They can last that long since parts are readily available, so when something breaks down, you can easily have them replaced, and your water heater can still be used.
Now that you know what the best products in the market are and what parameters are essential when it comes to choosing an outdoor tankless water, you have all the information you need that will help you pick out the best model that will suit your needs.